COLLINS, MS (WDAM) - This a news release from the Mississippi Attorney General.
Kenneth James Cooper, 30, of Collins, pleaded guilty Tuesday to one count of child exploitation, announced Attorney General Jim Hood Wednesday.
Cooper appeared before Covington County Circuit Judge Eddie H. Bowen and was sentenced to 40 years in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections, with five years to serve and 35 years of post-release supervision.
Cooper was ordered to pay $1,000 to the Mississippi Children's Trust Fund and $1,000 to the Mississippi Crime Victim's Compensation Fund.
Cooper must also register as a sex offender.
At the time crimes were committed, Cooper was arrested at his home May 4, 2015, by investigators with the Attorney General's Cyber Crime Unit/Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, with assistance from the FBI Child Exploitation Task Force and the Covington County Sheriff's Office.
The Attorney General's investigation revealed that Cooper had downloaded numerous images and videos of child pornography on his computer.
"The greatest threat to our children is the people they meet online," said Attorney General Jim Hood. "The internet provides countless ways for predators to make contact with our children.
The message I want to make clear to child pornographers throughout the state of Mississippi is: We are watching you on-line, we have crystal clear evidence against you when we knock on your door, you will have to serve at least five years without parole in the penitentiary, and you will have to register as a convicted sex offender for a minimum of 25 years. Is it worth it?"
This case was prosecuted by Special Assistant Attorney General Brandon Ogburn of the Attorney General's Cyber Crime Division.